Experts ponder Anthem hack

Experts ponder Anthem hack

The second biggest supplier in of health insurance in the US, Anthem, recently suffered a data breach, and now experts believe hackers may have taken advantage of a vulnerability found in the company’s computer system or acquired login details through social engineering.

Specialists from the  firm Mandiant, working alongside Anthem in investigating the breach, told SCMagazine that the hack involved custom backdoors. They remain uncertain, however, as to how what has become one of the biggest data beaches in the health industry to date could have been successful.

Anthem’s CEO and president, Joseph Swedish, said the company worked on fixing the flaw as soon as it identified the hack.

More information is likely to come from Anthem regarding what possible flaw enabled the cyber criminals to hack into the system, with security professionals helping to solve the issue.

Jasper Graham, ex-NSA technical director, told SCMagazine by email that hackers may have accessed data by acquiring credentials through social engineering, or by exploiting a flaw in Anthem’s computer system.

Graham talked about how long this attack may have been carried out for, commenting:

“I don’t believe this was a smash and grab. Based on the amount of data stolen, it took the attackers some time to figure out where they were and what they could have access to.”

Cyber experts may find more concrete information once the investigation is complete. In the meantime, firms in healthcare, along with those in any other industry, need to be vigilant when it comes to cyber crime. Advertising cyber security jobs in a bid to shore up security personnel would be a step in the right direction.

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